Start your holiday meal with a simple yet gorgeous beet tart, topped off with tangy goat cheese, crunchy hazelnuts, and flaky sea salt. Par-bake the crust to get a lovely raised edge (what forms the shell of your tart) and ensure that the bottom will be cooked through. If you or your guests are not beet fans, substitute sweet potatoes: Wrap 4 (4-ounce) sweet potatoes in parchment paper, and microwave at HIGH 3 minutes; then cool, peel, and slice. You can also substitute crumbled feta for goat cheese and toasted walnuts or pecans for the hazelnuts.
5 small red, gold, and Chioggia beets (about 1 1/2 lb.)
Place beets on a large piece of foil; bring edges of foil to center. Add 1 tablespoon water to beets; crimp edges of foil to seal. Bake for 1 hour or until beets are tender when pierced with a fork. Remove foil; discard. When cool enough to handle, peel beets, and thinly slice using a mandoline or sharp knife.
Roll out puff pastry sheet to a 14- x 12-inch rectangle on a large piece of parchment paper. Place parchment paper with puff pastry on a baking sheet. Score a 1-inch border around edge of puff pastry with a paring knife; prick area inside border several times with a fork. Bake pastry for 14 minutes or until light golden, and remove from oven.
Arrange beet slices over puff pastry, inside border, so that slices overlap by about 1/2 inch. Bake for 12 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Brush orange juice over beets; drizzle with honey. Sprinkle hazelnuts, thyme, salt, and goat cheese over tart. Cut into 12 slices.
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